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Monday, July 11, 2011

Just the Facts? - Jellyfish Domination, Killer UFO and New Bid To Find Alien Life

Are the oceans being dominated by jellyfish?

Last year I began to wonder, this year doubt is seeping away, to be replaced with a rising fear. Could it really have happened? Could the fishing industry have achieved the remarkable feat of destroying the last great stock?

Until 2010, mackerel were the one reliable catch in Cardigan Bay in west Wales. Though I took to the water dozens of times, there wasn't a day in 2008 or 2009 when I failed to take 10 or more. Once every three or four trips I would hit a major shoal, and bring in 100 or 200 fish: enough, across the season, to fill the freezer and supply much of our protein for the year. Those were thrilling moments: pulling up strings of fish amid whirling flocks of shearwaters, gannets pluming into the water beside my kayak, dolphins breaching and blowing. It was, or so it seemed, the most sustainable of all the easy means of harvesting animal protein.

Even those days were nothing by comparison to what the older residents remembered: weeks on end when the sea was so thick with fish that you could fill a bucket with mackerel just by picking them off the sand, as they flung themselves through and beyond the breaking waves while pursuing their prey.

Last year it all changed. From the end of May to the end of October I scoured the bay, on one occasion paddling six or seven miles from land – the furthest I've ever been – to try to find the fish. With the exception of a day on which I caught 20, I brought them back in ones or twos, if at all. There were many days on which I caught nothing at all.

There were as many explanations as there were fishermen: the dolphins had driven them away, the north-westerlies had broken up the shoals, a monstrous fishmeal ship was stationed in the Irish Sea, hoovering up 500 tonnes a day with a fiendish new vacuum device. (Despite a wealth of detail on this story I soon discovered that no such ship existed. But that's fishermen for you).

I spoke to a number of fisheries officials and scientists, and was shocked to discover that not only did they have no explanation, they had no data either.

So I hoped for the best – that the dearth could be explained by a fluctuation of weather or ecology. When the fish failed to arrive at the end of May I told myself they must be on their way. They had, after all, been showing off the south-west of England – it could be only a matter of time. I held off until last weekend.

The conditions were perfect. There was no wind, no swell, and the best water visibility I've ever seen here. I looked at the sea and thought "today's the day when it all comes right."

I pushed my kayak off the beach and felt that delightful sensation of gliding away from land almost effortlessly – I'm so used to fighting the westerlies and the waves they whip up in these shallow seas that on this occasion I seemed almost to be drifting towards the horizon. Far below me I could see the luminous feathers I used as bait tripping over the seabed.

But I could also see something else. Jellyfish. Unimaginable numbers of them. Not the transparent cocktail umbrellas I was used to, but solid, white rubbery creatures the size of footballs. They roiled in the surface or loomed, vast and pale, in the depths. There was scarcely a cubic metre of water without one.

Apart from that – nothing. It wasn't until I reached a buoy three miles from the shore that I felt the urgent tap of a fish, and brought up a single, juvenile mackerel. Otherwise, though I paddled to all the likely spots, I detected nothing but the jellyfish rubbing against the line. As I returned to shore I hooked a greater weever – which thrashed around the boat, trying to impale me on its poisonous spines. But that was all.

Is this the moment? Have I just witnessed the beginning of the end of vertebrate ecology here? If so, the shift might not be confined to Cardigan Bay. In a perfect conjunction of two of my recent interests, last week a monstrous swarm of jellyfish succeeded where Greenpeace has failed, and shut down both reactors at the Torness nuclear power station in Scotland.

The Israeli branch of Jellyfish Action pulled off a similar feat at the nuclear power station in Hadera this week.

A combination of overfishing and ocean acidification (caused by rising concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere) has created the perfect conditions for this shift from a system dominated by fish to a system dominated by jellyfish.

If this is indeed what we're seeing, the end of vertebrate ecology is a direct result of the end of vertebrate politics: the utter spinelessness of the people charged with protecting the life of the seas. In 2009 the Spanish fleet, for example, vastly exceeded its quota, netting twice the allowable catch of mackerel in the Cantabrian Sea, and no one stopped them until it was too late.

Last week, the European commission again failed to take action against the unilateral decision by Iceland and the Faroes to award themselves a mackerel quota several times larger than the one they agreed to, under their trilateral agreement with the EU and Norway. Iceland and the Faroes have given two fingers to the other nations, and we appear to be incapable of responding.

The mackerel haven't yet disappeared from everywhere, but my guess is that the shoals which, since time immemorial, came into Cardigan Bay, were a spillover from the mass movements up the Irish Sea. As the population falls, there's less competitive pressure pushing them towards the margins. Without data, guesswork is all we've got.

I desperately hope it's not the case, but it could be that the fish that travelled to this coast, in such numbers that it seemed they could never collapse, have gone. - guardian


Several nuclear power plants have had to shut down recently due to jellyfish clogging their seawater filtration systems, possibly reflecting a jellyfish population explosion

A nuclear power plant on the coast of Israel was forced to shut down this week when its seawater cooling system became clogged with jellyfish. A similar incident temporarily disabled two nuclear reactors at the Torness power station on the Scottish coast last week. A week before, a reactor in Shimane, Japan was crippled by yet another jellyfish infiltration.

Amid speculation that warm waters and ocean acidification — both driven by climate change — are boosting jellyfish populations, are these three incidents signs of a growing trend?

"The several [power plant incidents] that happened recently aren't enough to indicate a global pattern. They certainly could be coincidental," said Monty Graham, a jellyfish biologist and senior marine scientist at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab off the Gulf Coast of Alabama.

Graham said there have been dozens of cases of jellyfish causing partial or complete shutdowns of coastal power plants in the past few decades, as well as shutdowns of desalination plants. Steve Haddock of the Monterrey Bay Aquarium Research Institute said a power plant in Australia was shut down by jellyfish as long ago as 1937. Such events aren't surprising; all these plants draw water out of the ocean, and they are already fitted with filtration devices called flumes that remove jellyfish and other debris.

"Only when you have a huge influx of jellies do they overwhelm the flumes," Graham told Life's Little Mysteries. This happens when a jellyfish bloom — a huge swarm of adult specimens brought together by ocean currents — flows into a power plant's filtration system.

Jellyfish blooming occurs mostly in the spring and summer months, which may partly explain why the three recent power plant incidents happened in close succession. While conditions brought on by climate change may also be creating more jellyfish blooms than there used to be, signifying a worldwide jellyfish population explosion, researchers can't tell whether that's occurring; they began tracking jellyfish populations too recently.

"In some places, there have been some dramatic population increases in the past few decades, but overall, it's hard to identify a trend," Graham said. "We don't have the hard data because we haven't been looking at jellyfish on a long enough timescale."

Claudia Mills, a jellyfish biologist at the University of Washington, said that there are some documented cases of local population increases. For example, an invasive species has been spreading in the Mediterranean for decades, and may be the culprit that clogged the Israeli plant. However, Mills told us, a lot of the concern about rising populations on a larger scale is based on hyperbole. "We don't know what is going on with jellyfish in most parts of the world," she wrote in an email.

Some researchers do suspect that populations are rising, as jellyfish may thrive in warmer oceans. "Jellyfish populations spike and wane with climate variability, so it's not hard to make the logical leap that if climate is changing long-term, we'll likely see a population change," Graham said. He is conducting research to investigate whether jellyfish populations are increasing globally, and if so, why.

Of course, a higher incidence of power plant-jellyfish standoffs (if, in fact, the incidence is higher) could also reflect the increasing number of coastal power plants, Graham said.

Either way, getting the power plants back online is not such a difficult fix.

"Plants only have to deal with a heavy-duty problem once or twice and they'll realize it's such a huge cost to them that they'll introduce countermeasures," he said. These include additional filters and a jet bubble system that makes incoming jellyfish float to the surface, where they can be skimmed off. "In some cases, the plants can just monitor for jellies and shut down temporarily when there's a bloom." - livescience


New telescope may link us to alien life

It will revolutionise our understanding of the universe and might help us make contact with alien life.

The square kilometre array is one of the most ambitious science projects ever conceived and when completed will be the world's most powerful radio telescope, thousands of times more capable than anything currently available.

It could explain the origin of dark matter, which makes up about 90 per cent of the universe and reveal how galaxies and stars were formed.

But what has scientists most excited is its potential to reveal things not yet dreamed of.

"What's really exciting is the unknown, unknowns that the SKA will discover," said Brian Boyle, who is leading the bid to have the array centred in Australia.

"If we could predict what the SKA was going to discover we weren't being ambitious enough.

"It's going to revolutionise our understanding of the universe.

"When we use the word transformational, we literally mean that because it transforms our thinking from our present paradigm to something that we can't even contemplate today."

Australia and New Zealand are jointly bidding against South Africa for the right to build the square kilometre array, with a final decision to be made by the international science community in February.

The 1.5 billion euro project involves the construction of about 3000 dishes which, when linked together, have a total collecting surface of about one square kilometre.

If the bid is successful it will be based in an area of the Western Australian outback at Murchison which is highly prized because it offers a quiet zone, an area unaffected by competing radio signals.

The director of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research, Peter Quinn, said the SKA's strength would be its ability to process immense amounts of data.

"This telescope generates the same amount of data in a day as the entire planet does in a year," Professor Quinn said.

Much of that data will be stored in facilities in Perth but storage and processing centres will also be established in a range of other countries.

"So it's presenting challenges to the IT industry which are beyond the scope of what this whole planet can provide," he said.

"The amount of data this telescope produces, the amount of information it has to process, is going to drive the IT industry for the next that 10 to 15 years."

The SKA has the backing of the federal government with Industry Minister Kim Carr describing it as project of immense international significance.

He said Australia would be taking on an enormous responsibility to bring the SKA in on budget, on time and with the expected capabilities.

"It's probably the most important piece of infrastructure we're likely to be involved in over the next generation." Senator Carr said.

"This is the sort of project that is iconic and will produce enormous inspiration for many, many people.

"But, not only that, it will provide enormous employment opportunities in high-wage, high skilled jobs.

"This is a project that will go for 50 years."

Australian scientists involved in the bid are currently responding to a series of questions and must present their reports by September 15.

A decision on the location will be made in early 2012 with construction of the array expected to take until about 2020.

When it starts probing the depths of the universe it could finally answer what the astronomer-in-charge at the Australian Astronomical Observatory, Fred Watson, calls the "big picture" questions in science, including whether or not there is intelligent life on other planets.

"It will have the potential to reveal all kinds of things ranging from the possibility of picking up signals from aliens, if they exist," Professor Watson said.

"More seriously, it will look at the early universe, trying to work out how galaxies were formed.

"Insights into that are of extreme value to scientists for all kinds of reasons.

"One of which is to confirm the picture we have of the origin of the universe and its early evolution is correct.

"But more especially to tell us things we simply don't dream about at the moment.

"Always with these things the most exciting discoveries are the ones that are completely unexpected.

"So who knows what a facility like this might produce?" -


UFO trying to kill me....send help!

Texas - (unedited): This U.F.O.I have identified as my guardian angels ship over me.The ones inside told me to tell my future wife, Anita Jean Davis, she had a floating hospital over her bed(a parabel)This ship has technology on it to heal gods people,as me and her.They cleaned her system in the hospital,which she said she did not want to go.My angels made me pray for her so they could heal her.Her angles as mine have x-ray and night vision on their ships to be able to see through the walls in the day and night so they can use thier negitive magnets to lock on to the tiny broken bone splinters inside of her body that were sharp as a surgeons scalpal from being told like me by my angels to eat out together over a leaky gut that we both did not know we had but our angels did know.After they locked onto them they moved them arond inside of her clean her systemup as told in in the bible in the book of was all in her face like mine for so long it created boils own her face.Her angles straightend out her legs to my prayers.Her angels wronged her by thakeing out the part in her brain that worked her lungs.Also by not giving us our own money they took from us she had to stand at work while food leaked out into her bone marrow weakening it which bent her legs also as mine.She had to be put on oxegen and a walker.We were doing the MAKERS DIET book as told to do by my angels over me(Paslms 91,v.11,which reads "HE shall give angels charge over you").Our angels did not honor the two heaing scriptuers in the book.They were to reshape us with those tiny broken bone splinters that Isent a picutre of to President Obama of them tiny pieces comeing out of her legs.In the pitcure I drew,I wrote these are not hairs coming out of her legs as she sceamed "GOD HELP ME" "LARRY HELP ME".Our angels wer to reshape us to the young bodies they watched us pick for our after pitcure.Our angels even watched us take a before pitcure for the book I wrote for us as Jordan S. Rubin wrote for himself for wealth. My stupied angels have taken out that part in my brain as before tring to get me to go to the hospital.Anita seen my book.I called it the fountain of youth.It shouwed how our angels mirical workerswere to do good genicts own us to grow me hair own my bald head as my angels said my dad had on his head in heaven.He died at 52.He did not kwown that his angel over him in a ship could do all that I have wrote such as use the tiny broken pieces iof bone inside of him to trim his thick skin even off his heart to live forever and never die(give up the ghost inside of you as christ did).I figured out he could have his youthfull body on earth.Christ said my fathers will, will be done on earth as in heaven.All gotten with the right foods we eat.I gave gave my book along with my bile it was based on that in the new testiment new limbs grew.This means teeth and hair.My book showed me with hair and teeth wineing ang dinningout with Anita.My angel stole it from the church.My angel said I dont wont them old deseased peple to have that book. he said to me I will take it out of the drawer he put it in. Idid not see him put it in a drrwer as my angel said he did(x-ray tech)I went to the church to get my book and the man said Iput it in the drawer.He went to get it and said it was gone.Then my angel started not only stealing my sleep but our debit cards money by seeing our pin numbers.I invented foot wear next for Anita. We took them to inventhelp.our angels still would not give us our own money back to pay Inventhelp.Then they started breaking into Invent help and added money I did not owe to my bills as they did with my electic bill to make me homeless.All this after they surgiclly removed our sleep with those negitive magnet aimed at our heads.They did this to me 7 years ago to steal my sleep and after going to G.E.D. classes for a long time it cused me to not be able to go back to school to get my Diploma to get a good Job and marry Anita.Our stupied angels messed up our lives and hide Anita so I cant tell her all these truths.My grandmother was to get her young body alsoand is now dead.These angels ran us out of our apts.My teeth partcals were in there.In a bible I read it showed they gave JOB money as they are giving to others on thier debit man said mine gave me 400.00 another 200.00.I am owed billions for my teeth my lost of foot were sales.diploma(lost of work)and for framming me in jails by telling me to go to Anita,that she was in trouble on night after I rented a motel room.I went to her late as my angel said and this got criminal charges put on me.My angels bragg how they can correct all these computers and files as they stole from me,opening file drawers ect.They tried to lift Anitas auto once with those magnets on thier ships so I been waing for them to lift the new me and show it paid in full with the money we are owedMy angel once asked me tif he cold use my signature.I said yes. He went and got two moneygramms and paid my rent but then got me thrown out.Anita said please give us our money so we can go on vacationat dakato ridge apts they ran us out of. Send me an investigator. - MUFON CMS

NOTE: No comment, other than to say that this type of incident report usually does have some paranormal aspect to it but usually not at the degree described. I rarely discount a witnesses' statement until I have looked into the situation. I received something similar in my email a few weeks ago...not sure if it is the same person. A follow up was never forwarded to me...Lon


Shape-shifting UFO reported over Sao Paulo, Brazil

I submitted this on Saturday 9th of July 2011, but at the time, I was still processing what I had been looking at in Sao Paulo about an hour ago before reporting the event, plus I've got more photos.

Looking at peoples pictures of their experiences with similar objects, I've concluded that I had seen a shape changing "worm-like" ufo, similar to one reported at [Link moved to additional evidence section/cms/tg], only my observation was during daytime.

The object looked as a one thing, but with translucent, octopus-like connections, with pleasant-looking strobing lights, at least blue and red, with the overall thing looking, when moving, like a diamond-octopus stumbling along the sky without a head, with an aura that made the object stood out against the blue sky.

The funny thing is, thinking back, the object had its "arms" stretched out, but the moment I took my camera out and pointed at it, it went into an orb shape (picture "object-sao-paulo-1" below), like a flower folding its pedals in for the night, then went nearly transparent double-orb shape for the second picture I took of it ("object-sao-paulo-2"), right after, with only an outline of it visible.

The remaining pictures were taken once the shape-shifting object had moved a good distance further away, and this time, the first picture (that picture is available in the earlier, previous report of the event on July 9th) showed the orbs connected to the translucent "arms", second showing nearly indistinguishable transparent single orb and the final picture showing the bright orbs with a strange black outline ("object-sao-paulo-5").

The pictures are named in the order they were taken, with the first two the object being closer, and the third one being from a longer distance. - MUFON CMS


Pennsylvania MUFON - 2 events this coming weekend

Further inquiries - MUFONPA